Weekly Wrapup: Feds to Keep Funding Dispensary Raids + MMJ Lawyer Faces Repercussions
Talk about a missed opportunity.
Federal lawmakers could have taken a big step toward progressiveness on the medical marijuana front last week. The opportunity came gift-wrapped in the form of a bill that would have nixed government funding for raids on dispensaries and other MMJ businesses. The measure would have sent a clear message to President Obama that the government should back off cannabis companies complying with local regulations and laws. It also would’ve further legitimized the entire industry.
Lawmakers, however, shot down the bill by a wide margin after nearly an hour of debate. The vote split along party lines, as is usually the case with medical marijuana measures. Democrats overwhelming supported the proposal to cut the funding pipeline for raids, while Republican lawmakers opposed it (90% voted against the measure).
It’s not a huge setback for the industry, as the measure wasn’t expected to pass anyway – despite a last-minute push by medical marijuana advocacy organizations to get support for the measure. But the development is discouraging nonetheless, as it seems Washington is digging in its heels amid growing acceptance of medical cannabis across the nation.
There was also a troubling development last week in Colorado, where a lawyer reportedly lost her malpractice insurance coverage because she has represented medical marijuana companies and individuals involved in the industry. The lawyer’s insurance company – Hanover Insurance Group – informed the attorney that it would not renew her liability coverage because working with medical marijuana clients violates its underwriting guidelines. If other insurance firms take this same stance, attorneys and other professionals could sever ties with MMJ businesses – which would exacerbate the industry’s already-monumental challenges.
Other top stories last week:
The formerly fractured Arizona marijuana community emerged as a united front on Friday, with representatives [click to continue...]
Medical marijuana programs in two states are looking for new leaders. Bob Morgan, the coordinator [click to continue...]
A pair of proposed 2016 ballot measures tied to cannabis have been filed with the [click to continue...]
CNN’s chief medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta gave the medical marijuana industry another shot in the [click to continue...]
Two California lawyers have teamed up to start the National Cannabis Bar Association, with the [click to continue...]
Marijuana businesses hoping for some potential legal guidance on unionization from a case in New [click to continue...]
A federal judge in California on Wednesday declined to overturn marijuana’s place on the Drug [click to continue...]
Washington State Gov. Jay Inslee will likely sign a bill passed by the Legislature that [click to continue...]
Some attorneys still won’t touch the cannabis industry, it seems. David Knowlton, co-founder of the [click to continue...]
The opening of Delaware’s first and only MMJ dispensary has been delayed again, but this [click to continue...]
Even though New York hasn’t even begun issuing business licenses yet for medical marijuana companies, [click to continue...]
In response to attempts by lawmakers to extend the timeline for the state’s medical cannabis [click to continue...]
Banks have filed more than 1,700 so-called “marijuana limited” suspicious activity reports since the federal [click to continue...]
Arizona dispensaries could see fewer new patients after the state’s governor signed a bill forcing [click to continue...]